Contributed photo / Marlene Mignerey
Salmon River’s Devin Buys has been one of the team’s leading rushers all year, and paced the Savages past Lighthouse Christian with 155 yards on the ground. But like the other local teams that will play for state titles on Saturday, Nov. 21, SRHS is a multi-headed monster. Canyon Harper ran for 141 yards last Saturday, Nov. 14, and five Savages scored.
As of Wednesday, November 18, 2015
RIGGINS A fumble return moments into the 1AD2 semifinal showdown between Lighthouse Christian and Salmon River put SRHS behind the eight-ball — but not quite literally. The Savages stuffed the conversion attempt, regrouped, and struck back — all the way back to the championship round, which they had last reached in 2013.
A back-and-forth pattern persisted throughout the contest, which wound up in a 44-32 Salmon River victory.
After Lighthouse’s Eric Silva punished the turnover — the first of four Savages giveaways — the Savages put in a short pass from Tucker Boyd to Beaud Hopkins. The conversion pass from Boyd to Rylie Travis gave SRHS the lead, which the Savages promptly expanded.
Devin Buys — who wound up leading Salmon River with 155 rushing yards — scored from 11 yards out. Boyd hit Canyon Harper for the conversion, and on the last play of the second quarter, Boyd caught a trick play touchdown pass from Travis.
Hopkins went in motion, took a curious path through the backfield, and took the ball as if to run. He pitched back to Travis, who delivered a throw to Boyd, who was not covered as he leaked out of the backfield. He wound up taking it 31 yards to the end zone, putting SRHS up 22-6.
But Lighthouse stopped the conversion try, then returned third quarter kickoff 75 yards for a score.
The Lions’ surge continued, and eventually put the visitors in the lead. Two big plays turned the score against the hosts, 26-22.
Harper and Travis led the Savages back, but with some difficulty. Fumbles plagued the Savages, but after a Lion was flagged for roughing Boyd, Harper barrelled into the end zone at the end of a run-heavy series.
After Travis crashed in with the conversion, the Savages finally caught a break in the form of Lighthouse’s first and only giveaway, which Salmon River recovered at the Lions’ 28.
Travis carried several times, converted a fourth-and-six with a seven-yard burst, and tore into the end zone with an 18-yarder.
Lighthouse struck back early in the fourth quarter, but Travis brought the contest to its effective end with a two-yard burst. The short run capped a run-only series that covered 63 yards on six plays that brought the game clock under five minutes.
Lighthouse advanced into Salmon River territory before collapsing into a fourth-and-23 situation which resulted in a turnover on downs.
Coming — Salmon River (9-1) has a date with undefeated Deary (11-0) at 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 21. The Mustangs have played four close games this season, two of which have come against common opponents. Deary beat Kendrick 42-26 and beat Council 36-28 in the first round. SRHS beat Council 28-22 and beat Kendrick 48-20.